Using Recidivism Rate as the Sole Indicator of Prison-Based Rehabilitation Program Usefulness: Lessons for 21st Century Corrections Policy
Charles B. A. Ubah

Offender rehabilitation is one of the goals of the correctional system and a very controversial one that continues to divide policy makers, correctional practitioners, scholars and the general public. And since prison-based education especially at the postsecondary level is a very significant offender rehabilitative program, it is made the focus of this analysis. Offender recidivism rate is often used as the sole indictor of prison-based education program usefulness while ignoring other important considerations. This analysis, therefore, argues that in addition to offender recidivism rate, adequate attention should be given to other important considerations like academic, employment signaling, institutional function,and social values of prison-based education programs in any determination of the usefulness of the programs.This paradigm shift from the conventional way the subject is often examined previously, is scholarly significant, in that, it provides broader and deeper insights and lessons that may be too important and too costly to ignore in 21st century corrections policy and administration.

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